Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘Dancing Through Life’

Changes For Nia Members And Teachers

Posted by terrepruitt on October 12, 2020

Ahhh, today there were two meetings on Zoom to introduce the new options for Members and Teachers.  There was one for brand new Nia White Belt Graduates, since I just attended that training I was able to listen to that one.  Then there was one for people who are current Nia Members and I am a current Nia member.  So in light of those meetings I feel like it is the perfect time to post this post that has been sitting on my desktop.  I want to remind readers that I am a Nia teacher, I teach a dance exercise class called Nia.  Nia is really much, much more than that, but that is how I describe it when talking about what I teach.  I have written many posts about it and I have a lot of information about it on my website.  Nia was initially created by two people, Debbie Rosas and Carlos AyaRosas.  Carlos left the organization in, I believe it was 2010.  Debbie has continued the work.  It is so difficult to describe what “the work” means.  She continues to learn about the body and why it needs to move and then applies that to trainings.  It is multi-dimensional.  I am posting this as a reminder that anything I post about Nia has come from their/her teachings.  As I have said many times before not everything in Nia is new . . . they did not invent the moves we do in Nia, but they have added their own way of doing them and learning them and showing how they can help you move in your body more comfortably.  In addition to that reminder I want to remind people that many of the movement class forms (Zumba, PiYo, etc.) that you may take require the teacher to be licensed.  Nia is one of those things.  I pay a fee in order to market my class as “Nia”.  And Nia is introducing new ways that people can be licensed.

When I directly quote Debbie or the material I state it.  As a Nia teacher we are encouraged to share information about Nia.  I have taken pictures of our routine covers and I have created documents myself.  I have also used pages of The Nia Technique Book.  But I don’t post pictures of the training material from the belts.  ANYONE can buy The Nia Technique Book, but only a participant receives the training material – well, now I can say only a graduate as a current member receives the training material.  🙂 (This is part of the new options.)  I share the information about the belt trainings to entice you into wanting more.

Nia is giving options on licensing.  It used to be that if you wanted to teach you paid a licensing fee – either monthly or annually.  That fee came with a lot of things . . . DVDs of the routines (music, the choreography, and the additional training for a routine), teleconference calls, written articles, handouts, and various stuff, now the routines are on NiaTV and there are podcasts and other recorded things.  There are meditations and various types of movements including routines with the 52 Moves and Moving to Heal . . . there is a plethora of stuff.  Nia is going to have three tiers in which people can stay connected to the wealth of Nia training, they will still have the monthly NiaTV subscription if you just want access to Nia Workout Videos, Music, and Podcasts. The tiers just relate to the additional stuff that is part of Nia.

They are putting up a new website this week (hopefully Wednesday, 10/14/20) so you will be able to get all the details there.  I do not want to start to list them because I don’t want to misstate anything.  It is better for you to get the information from the source.  I am just giving you a heads up to let you know that there are options now.  And with Nia there is always a huge amount of material to access.  So as a member you can get a lot of information and if you want to teach you get more.  Each tier adds on stuff we will have access too.

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Since the old website is going away and it will have a new look, I thought I would post my profile page as a photo for this post.  I really hope that you will look into Nia . . . you can look into as a movement practice (if you like to dance) or if you want more.  Keep in mind the new website should be up this week.

So exciting!  Who wants to talk about Nia with me?

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Nia White Belt P5 – Awareness – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on August 5, 2020

First of all, to clarify, Nia uses triads in their training and they are continually updating them, they may change the language or possibly rearrange the order, but they have used and are still using triads.  This week our lesson was on Nia White Belt Principle 5.  It has four triads, one for the main principle and three more to help with understanding the principle and being able to have it.  The Nia White Belt Principle 5 is Awareness.  White Belt is all about the body so Nia White Belt P5 – Awareness is about body sensory awareness.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via ZoomThe main triad’s three points are: Body, Message, Response.  There is the body and we get messages and there is our response to the messages.  We have a relationship with our physical body and our energy body which are shown on the “wings” of the triad.  Your nose could have a tickle and your body sends you that message.  You have a relationship with that sensation in your body and with the energy/feelings it generates.  And your response could be to scratch your nose.  That is a very simple example.

The idea goes much deeper than that and it has three additional triads.  The first one is about skin, joints, and connective tissue and our perception of pain and pleasure.  The second one is about awareness, stimulation, and self-healing with a temperature gauge for pain and wings of logic and mystery.  And the third is about Dancing Through Life, Living Meditation, and Life as Art with the sacred athlete at the center and body and life as wings.  Dancing Through Life is the “doing” and Living Meditation is the “Non-Doing”.

There is so much that I can say about each triad but I always want to leave a little mystery so that when you get the book or take the training and dive deeper into it yourself you will have somethings still new to you.  I just want to say a few things about some of the points, self-healing in Nia is not telling you that you can heal yourself without medical assistance, it is more to the effect of moving to heal or in a way that allows your body to heal and not cause injury.  If in your dance you step really wide into a sumo stance and you feel pain in your knees, you could “self-heal” by adjusting to a smaller sumo stance.  This is a simple example, but it is about having awareness and moving to stimulate self-healing.

Also, I wanted to get a little more detailed about Dancing Through Life . . . one of my favorite sayings and ideas of Nia.  A part of the idea is to — literally, DANCE THROUGH LIFE.  Again, remember that Nia has a broad definition of “dance”, so this doesn’t mean do the waltz or plies though life, it is more like noticing everything you do is your dance.  Brushing your teeth is your dance, making your dinner is your dance – the DOING of life is your dance,  The non-doing is living meditation.  Stop and notice things.  Then allow Life to be Art.

Remember there is The Nia Technique Book that covers all of this.  As I have been saying the language now in 2020, is a bit different, but the core of the information is the same.  So even though The Nia Technique Book was published in 2004, you would still get a lot out of it.  Also, this training is available to anyone, you don’t have to want to teach Nia, you just have to want to maybe look at things – things that are not new to you – a little differently, from a body centered outlook.  Currently there are many trainings happening (about to happen) online.

What here sparks your interest about Nia White Belt P5 – Awareness?  Are you living in a body that is always in pain?  Do you think of yourself as Dancing Through Life?  Are you living in a body that is always in pain?

Posted in 2020 Nia White Belt Principles, Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Mindfulness

Posted by terrepruitt on December 17, 2015

Oh.  Recently someone posted a link to a video on Facebook.  So I watched this little video about “Mindfulness”.  It was a cartoon where these animals were talking about being mindful.  The example used was one of the animals was driving in traffic and something made him angry.  Now I can’t find the video to verify, but I thought that the animal, I think it was a cow was advised to not get mad or to not act upon his anger or to just let it go.  So basically what I got from the video was that “mindfulness” was not acting out on your emotions or your “bad” emotions.  Just observe them then let them pass.  I then looked up a few definitions of mindfulness and a few of them said the same thing.  Funny . . . to me, I always thought of mindfulness as being AWARE of things.  Being in the moment and paying attention to what you are doing.

I guess the videos definition and example can be that if that means you just let the moment go and don’t focus on it and stay angry, but still I felt it was a totally different definition and idea than what I think of as mindfulness.  To me the situation he was talking about was just letting things go.  I guess some people could call letting things go mindfulness.

I really think of mindfulness as being present and being aware.  Ya know, not brushing your teeth while doing other things (my prime example because that is what I often do).  Or not walking down the street with your head bent down to see your phone.  Or not texting while driving.  Or one I know many of us do — because I see many people go back — walk away from our cars not certain if we locked it and have to go back to check.  To me mindfulness is giving your full mind, your attention to your teeth brushing, walking, driving, and getting out of the car and locking it.  To me it is focusing on what you are doing.  Kind of like what we have in Nia, called Dancing Through Life.  Paying attention to what we are doing.  Making it a dance.  Noticing our movements.

I guess, mindfulness can have different meanings.  I mean, obviously, because that video said one thing and I’ve heard it defined other ways.

What about you?  What is your definition of mindful?  Or what would you use as an example of mindful?

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Amongst the Sadness and Sorrow, There is Thanks

Posted by terrepruitt on November 24, 2011

Since my posting schedule is Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, I am always going to end up posting on Thanksgiving.  My hubby and I don’t have kids and we are both the youngest of the children.  I have always figured that I don’t get to do the Holiday dinners because I don’t have kids and I am the baby.  That is fine with me.  As I have shared with you before, I am not a fan of all the traditional Thanksgiving Day food.  I usually just eat the turkey sans gravy, the bread, the potatoes, and the salad.  If there is another vegetable I will eat that.  But I don’t like the sweet potato casserole, the stuffing/dressing, the cranberries, or the gravy.  So to me the meal is not one of those meals that I look forward to all year long.  But I do like to give thanks.  I am very blessed so I give thanks all year round, but on Thanksgiving people are more apt to accept the compliment and the gratitude.

dance exercise, Nia, Nia class, Nia Dance, Nia cardio dance exerciseThis year there are some sad things surrounding our holidays.  This is the first year we will be without the matriarch of husband’s family.  This is a source of great sadness, of course.  I am sure there will be many tears shed as we gather without the light that brightened every family gathering.  I am sure it will be a bit surreal.  Also my hubby’s best friend will be experiencing his first holiday without his mom.  And another loss that I am feeling – although less drastic – one of my best friend’s is moving away.  She is moving far enough away that there will be no day trip visits.  This will be the first Christmas in 25 years that we will not have “Christmas with the Girls.”  Yes, I know this is a post about Thanksgiving, but she will be gone right after, so I mention it.  So much loss, so much sadness.

But even though moments of sorrow might have me bowing my head for tears to fall, life is still a blessing.  There is so much to be thankful for.  I cannot deny the blessings that I have.  I can’t walk around in a constant state of gloom.  I have to go on being joyful.  I have to go on with the dance.  As we say in Nia, Dance Through Life.  Yeah, right in the middle I might stop stricken by the realization, stopped by a thought or a memory, but it’s not right to dwell on the sadness and the injustice of it all.  Not only will dwelling on the negative effect me, it is an affront to all that is good.

So while this Holiday season will have a large shadow hanging about, I will shine bright enough in my thankfulness that I will not allow the darkness to prevail.  Of the things I will be expressing gratitude for is the blessing of these people having been in my life.  So I like thanksgiving, because it is a time to gather and give thanks.  It is a time for gratitude.

I hope this finds you and yours well.  I hope there are things in your life you can be thankful for.  Even if this is not the time of yerr for your Thanksgiving (Canada does it in October) or if you don’t celebrate it at all, maybe you can give thanks just because your are grateful.

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Yin Yang

Posted by terrepruitt on April 28, 2011

I have written before about how we set a focus and intent for every Nia class.  With each Nia routine there is a set focus and intent, one that was used at the recording of the training DVD, but with Nia we are invited to use different focuses and different intents.  Using different focuses and intents allows for different sensations to be experienced with the Nia routines.  This week I am teaching the original focus and intent with the routine.  The focus is yin and yang.

I like this information I found regarding Yin and Yang, it states:  “Yin yang are complementary opposites that interact within a greater whole, as part of a dynamic system. Everything has both yin and yang aspects, but either of these aspects may manifest more strongly in particular objects, and may ebb or flow over time. ”

With yin yang as a focus when we move our upper extremities in a manner akin to yin and our base in a yang manner we have complementary opposites moving the body which is the greater whole.  Additional yin yang sensations are hard and soft, rough and smooth, straight and curved, up and down, stable and wobbly, loud and quiet, silly and serious . . . . .ooooooh the list goes on and on.

Yin Yang is amazing.  It allows for many different movements, ideas, sensations, and feelings.  We move our bodies slow, then we move hips fast as our arms float slowly in the air, then its our whole body fast.  We hop reminding our legs of the sensation of agility, then we spend time with hands in a flutter so they can experience the fast start and stop of agility.  We invite our neurons to stretch and grow having one hand flutter and the other one move slowly through the air.  There are moments when the whole body is moving in unison in a yin way then it moves in unison in a yang way.  There are points where upper body is move in either yin or yang while the body is moving in yang or yin then there is a switch.  Yin yang is an exercise in coordination.  Also great balance practice.  As an example stand on one leg, then still standing on one leg move your arms around you in a quiet manner, then make them loud.  That yin yang really trains the intrinsic muscles for greater stability.

What made me think about sharing this was today while I was doing something at home I thought, “Do in yin and yang!”  So I did it fast then I did it slow, then I did it on two legs and then I did it on one leg.  Whatever I was doing I realized that I could bring the focus from my Nia class this week into my everyday household chores.  Yes, I know I have actually put this in a post before  . . . in Nia we do “Dance Through Life“.  This is dancing through life.  I just love when I am dancing through life and I can share it in a post easily.

I invite you to move through your day experiencing yin and yang.  So things fast then slow, move one arm fast and the other slow, move big, move little, move big and little at the same time . . . you understand.  Go.  Dance through life . . . be yin . . . be yang . . . be yin and yang!

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Awareness – Dancing Through Life

Posted by terrepruitt on May 4, 2010

Nia White Belt Principle #5 – Awareness – Dancing Through Life

I have been avoiding this principle because it can be very complex. To me, all of Nia’s White Belt Principles can be complex because they can be applied strictly to the cardio workout that is one aspect of Nia, they can be applied to Nia as a practice—which translates into, they can be applied to life, or they can just be applied to life.

Debbie Rosas Stewart talked about Principle #5 in this month’s Nia Teleconference for EveryBODY. She kept it simple. In all the calls she talks for about 15 minutes then she takes questions for the last 15. The call is 30 minutes. I will share with you what she said, but I recommend you listen to the call when they have it up on the site. They record each call every month.

Since I like to keep my posts relatively short, I have realized that I can post short summaries of Nia information and re-visit the information in additional posts.

One of the first things she said is very true, and I would like you to think about it. She pointed out that we are often aware of pain whereas we are not aware of pleasure. If we have a sore body part, we are aware of it. It makes its presence known and we listen. I personally don’t think we always listen to what it needs, but that is topic of another post. But we certainly don’t always pay attention to pleasure.

With Nia we seek pleasure. We seek to move away from the pain and go towards the pleasure.

There are a few things we can do to assist with that. One way is to be aware. Be aware of what brings us pleasure. As we move throughout our day we can make our movements a dance. While we are “doing”, we can dance through life. As you are reading this and you shift in your chair, notice the movement of your hips, notice to tilt of your head, do it like a dance.

While you are not moving, while you are “not doing”. Notice the stillness in your body. Allow the stillness to bring calm, relaxation, a sort of meditation, if you will. Notice what it is you are touching. Not just touching with your hands, but with your entire body. Are you sitting on a chair? Are you leaning on a desk? Benefit from that touch and that “not doing”.

Life as art so notice the art around you. Notice the noises and allow them to filter in as sound. Breath in the sensation of life. Not talking about “art” that would be in a museum art, but just the beauty of the world. Whatever you find beautiful.

There is so much about Nia I always find myself saying, “Another thing . . . one thing . . . Nia this . . . and Nia that. . .” but really. Another thing about Nia is that it is kind. Nia believes that we receive what we need to receive. We are not expected to hear something and walk away knowing it all or knowing it perfectly. With that in mind, understand that this is what I heard. These are the notes I took. Please, I invite you to listen for yourself and glean from it what you need. Focus on what resonates with you.  Take away something you can share.

My site shows Nia class schedule in San Jose and San Carlos. On Nia’s main site you can look up classes in your area. There are classes all over the world.

Touching and Being Touched / May 3, 2010 Teleconference call is the call I have summarized here.

Presently in your life, do you dance through it?  Do you practice awareness?  Do you notice life as art?

Posted in Nia, Nia White Belt Principles | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »